Honda CR-Z in High Demand ~ Hybrid Car Review
Hybrid Car Review: Honda CR-Z in High Demand

Friday, March 12, 2010

Honda CR-Z in High Demand

Honda CR-Z Hybrid
According to a Nikkei report (via MarketWatch), the Honda CR-Z Hybrid already has 7,000 orders.  They had 4,500 pre-sales as of a few weeks ago when they set the price on the two-seater hybrid at just over $25,000.

That's 60% of the annual target of 12,000 units Honda set.  The pent up demand for a hybrid sports car seems to be higher than I would have thought, although the tax breaks and incentives put in place in Japan for hybrids may be a deciding factor for many.

With 7,000 pre-orders, the CR-Z now has a seven month waiting list (Honda set production at around 1,000 a month).

Update: Honda is now up to 10,000 orders on their sporty new hybrid.  Which means they have an effective waiting list of about 10 months.

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KLR said...


Great work you do here. This Deutsche Bank paper from last fall says for 2010 hybrids will be 4.2% of "light vehicle" sales, that is, "cars, personal light trucks, commercial light trucks, hybrids, plug-in hybrids and pure electric vehicles." I've used your numbers (and those of HybridDashboard) to get a figure for 2009 of 2.71% of passenger vehicles; haven't plugged in commercial sales. What do you think of the DB number?

Unknown said...

I'd say your number, 2.71%, sounds about right. I don't have the exact number, so I can't be exact. I haven't read the peak oil paper from the DB, but I can comment a bit based on your question.

I'd say the DB number was optimistic, and if they had asked me about it, I would have pointed out you need the cars to sell before you can sell them. Some hybrid cars aren't as popular for many reasons, while others (the Prius) can only sell as many as Toyota makes. And right now, alot of the Prius are being sold in Japan, not in the US.

Going forward, if the following three (possibly four) things happen, sales should bounce back and the 4.2% will become possible next year.

1) The current Toyota safety crisis and its imapact on their sales needs to calm down. 2) the tax incentives in Japan have to wind down without being renewed, allowing more Prius units to make it out of Japan. 3) The economy needs to continue to recover. Hybrids are not cheap and people need to have the money to buy them.

The fourth, which is optional, even if it is most likely, is gas prices have to stay high and possibly increase some more. Hybrid car sales, in general, tend to follow the same path as gas prices. I once calculated the correlation between the two and not surprisingly, the numbers are very closely related.

But this is all speculation based on the past. It's possible that alot of the possible hybrid buyers may hold off because they are waiting for the Chevy Volt. It's hard to guess at that right now. I believe it's going to come down to the price set by GM on their E-REV.

KLR said...

Thanks for your response, Mike. This is a very interesting topic; I'll try and plug in some of the commercial fleet numbers and see if I can get closer to Deutsch Bank's figure.

These are my #s for hybrid sales and % of overall sales:

% of total sales Hybrid Sales Sales

2009 2.71% 282,893 10,429,553
2008 2.38% 315,761 13,260,747
2007 2.16% 347,369 16,089,000
2006 2.83% 466,875 16,505,000
2005 1.21% 205,748 17,001,000

As can be seen hybrids are holding on to their popularity.

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